It is always interesting to come to know an individual’s personal experience of how they got where they are in life. We glean from others’ experiences of successes and failures, dos and don’ts, advice and criticisms. In hopes of motivation and encouragement to others, I relay my own personal experience in the ongoing pursuit of a career path, specifically that in the legal sphere.
Oh, The Places I Went…!
As I worked through college to obtain a Bachelor degree in…something, anything…I was also working on what I wanted to be when I grew up while experiencing the rat race of life from 8 to 5. I worked diligently in the work force in turn as a sales associate, manager of corporate retail stores, executive administrative assistants for country clubs and major airlines, and then life would have me move geographically to allow for another opportunity of growth and to add another building block to my resume. This all in the hope of finding my passion in life (at least one I could make some money doing!).
Sometimes the Sum is Greater Than Its Parts
Up to this point I had a class in college that I decided was my favorite and interested me most – Business Law. So, to sum up, I had lots of college credits ranging from business to theology, and lots of real world experience in corporate settings with heavy responsibility; with all that, I began a job search with an open mind of hopefully being able to combine classroom knowledge with my real world experience. I found an opening at a large health system looking for a legal assistant/paralegal. Was I qualified to be a paralegal? No. Was I qualified to be an assistant? Yes. Did I remember that I was intrigued by all things legal? Yes. I applied, and despite the fact that I lacked being a certified paralegal, they decided that I was just what they were looking for!
Lesson learned: don’t be afraid to attempt application because you have wrongly assumed that you are not qualified. Oftentimes education and real-world experience balance one another out.
Do Not Underestimate Yourself
During the course of four years working in a legal environment as a legal secretary, I found the means to finish and obtain a college Bachelor Degree, as well as obtain my paralegal certification. From me to you – explore, discover, dream, and don’t give up!